FRESNO, Calif. -- Fresno's historic Christmas Tree Lane is set to open on December 1 this year, but there will be no walk nights.
Every Christmas season, more than 100 homes and 300 Christmas trees along the stretch of Van Ness Blvd between Shields and Shaw Avenues are decked up with festive lights and decorations, attracting visitors from around the Central Valley.
But this year, the traditional Walk-Only Nights during which the street is blocked to vehicles and people experience the sights on foot, will not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Organizers met with Fresno authorities and decided it would be too difficult to maintain social distancing during those nights.
"It's just there's no way we can social distance people," says Dean Alexander, Chairman of the Christmas Tree Lane committee. "If anybody has been out here, you know you are just neck and neck with people. We typically have 30 to 40,000 people each night."
But the Fig Garden homeowners association, Christmas Tree Lane Committee and law enforcement all agreed that this year's event should be drive-through only--like it typically is for most nights of the event.
This will be the second year the Yrulegui family lives on Christmas Tree Lane.
"It was really special just to have two little kids and have them be able to look out the window and see the lights, and know that we are a part of it and we are putting out the lights for everyone else to come out and enjoy," says Caroline Yrulegui.
Caroline says driving down the lane will be the perfect way for families to celebrate the season--at a social distance.
"It's something to do and it's safe, and you're in your car with your own family," she said.
In fact, organizers say it could be the attraction's most popular year yet.
"I think it's going to be bigger than ever because they are limited from doing other things," Alexander said.
The lights on Christmas tree lane will come to life December 1 through Christmas.
Christmas Tree Lane to open on December 1, no walk nights this year
Organizers met with Fresno authorities and decided it would be too difficult to maintain social distancing during walk nights.